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Gaming commission approves sports betting rules | Local | Journal Gazette

28th August, 21:04

INDIANAPOLIS - Hoosiers around the state are now free to legally gamble on a bevy of sports - from football and racing to darts and sailing.

The Indiana Gaming Commission on Wednesday signed off on the rules for sports wagering, and casinos and off-track betting facilities will be unveiling their sports books starting Sunday through the rest of the month.

That includes the New Haven Winner's Circle OTB, which goes live Sept. 19 subject to regulatory approval.

But the entrance into mobile betting is still up in the air as casinos focused first on retail locations and will next add online wagering to the mix.

Gaming Commission Executive Director Sara Tait said the state hasn't received a formal request to launch mobile from any operator yet but regulatory work on mobile betting is ongoing.

"The operator focus is on retail right now. But we are in a very good position to do a quick pivot to mobile," she said.

Lawmakers authorized legal sports wagering earlier this year after a U.S. Supreme Court decision overturned a federal law banning state sports betting. Indiana is now the 12th state with legalizing sports betting.

Instead of stand-alone betting locations, the legislature chose to tie sports gaming to existing casinos and related facilities. To bet, a person must be 21 and located in Indiana. Geofencing technology allows vendors to block people outside Indiana.

The new law prohibits betting on high school or youth sports. In-play wagering is permitted if approved by the commission. These are bets during a game on what might happen next.

Tait announced the first five official launch dates - Indiana Grand in Shebyville Sunday; Ameristar in East Chicago Sunday; Hollywood in Lawrenceburg Sunday; Horseshoe Hammond Sept. 4; and French Lick Sept. 6.

Several casinos are planning fun launch events with celebrities placing the first bet.

Ameristar will have former Chicago Bears coach Mike Ditka and retired player Devin Hester on hand, according to a press release. Former Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Ken Anderson is scheduled to do the honors at Belterra in Florence Sept. 9.